Sneaking in KIDS

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So here is how it came out...

The kid was a saint.  Well behaved, polite and knew what an "indoor voice" was.  The other guests were most understanding of my predicament.  They laughed and said they were going to sue us...fortunately, I could tell they were kidding.

I spoke to the Grandma this morning (when all had gone well and I was calm and had my verbal skills back in place!)

I praised the kid's behavior, and then explained the policy of No Kids, AND we are limited by code to 2 guests per room.  She apologized, and said that when she booked the room on-line, no one had mentioned the no-kids policy (although she did book for 2 and showed up with 3!).

Now I need to revise my confirmation e-mail to make this policy CLEAR, and will tell anyone who does this again that they may not stay.  As my friends and I like to say...this had all the earmarks of a %^&$#@ growth experience!

Thanks for all the advice and the support!  smileyheart

Kathie

 

 

 

 

 

ARRRRRGGGG!. 

My Inn is for Adults only; no kids of any age. It says it on the web site; it says it on Bed&Breakfast.Com, The title page of the web site says, "A welcoming retreat for ADULTS to enjoy."  It used to say "for All to enjoy, but the first time someone showed up here with teenagers (2 couples on the same night) I changed it to ADULTS.

A few minutes ago, I opened the door, greeted my guests and then noticed a toddler standing behind them. 

This is is the busiest time of year for us, and I know there are no rooms to be had in the area, and they traveled over 3 hours to get here.
So now I am stuck with a 2-year old, and there are other guests in the house. 

I have no way to bill for the extra person, as having more than 2 people to a room is against code, so there is no clause on my web site about extras.
If this child cries and wakes up the other guests, I would feel obliged to refund their money. 

These people should not have been allowed to make this reservation (on-line booking). 

Other than shooing them off the porch...what have others done?.

Thanks for listening.

KB
 

gillumhouse's picture
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Mine were not a "sneak-in". The Lord's Pantry called to see if I had rooms available for a family of performers - as in NOW as no one had expected them to stay over for the next day's performance at the Gospel Sing fundraiser (including the family). They were such a hit people wanted them again. I have 2 rooms open. I am told they have a few kids. That triggers a question for me - ahhh how many kids. Um, nine. I figured the occupancy police were not going to be out that Saturday night and they were NOT being charged. It was a very rewarding experience on a personal basis (and with the community - the 3 year old was great PR) and one I plan to never repeat. They sang for us before they left!

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I am glad all went well for you. 

We have had it happen a few times that someone brought more people than we are allowed to accommodate by code.  They actually "smuggled" them in thinking that I am a complete idiot.  Well, I had news for them. They forfeit their money - all of it-  and I put them out on the street.  I am sorry, I won't put my business and good name on the line for people that obviously don't respect the rules.

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Proud Texan's picture
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I would have shooed them off the porch and kept their money.   It's clearly stated in our policies and they have to agree to the policies before the reservation is accepted.

It's not pleasant to do this,  but this is a business not a shelter for stupid people.

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this is a business not a shelter for stupid people...

I may have to use this as my new slogan...Love it!

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yes

Aussie Innkeeper's picture
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Proud Texan wrote:

It's not pleasant to do this,  but this is a business not a shelter for stupid people.

cheeky This is priceless!!

 

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Love that expression! but its why my insurance covers me for up to 30 even though technically we only take 24 - I like to be covered just in case.

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HB, I am sorry you had to go through this, disrespectful people!  But glad it turned out to be OK.

I had this happen about a year ago but they were late arrivals so did not know this until the next morning when the children - 2 of them, were creating havoc in the room.  A room for 2.  I do take children but not in that group of rooms.  And the topping on the cake - they were innkeepers!

JB, there are no laws here stating we must accept children.  There is code on max to a room and the number of beds in the room match that.  I have turned away guests that fail to abide by max # in a room - adult, children makes no difference. 

Madeleine's picture
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OK, a couple of things come to mind...your policies don't say there is BOTH a limit of 2 adults per room and no children are allowed. Or else Grandma wouldn't have had her out all prepared ahead of time.

On your rooms page you have to clearly state the maximum number of adults per room, per state occupancy codes. Every room has to have it right next to the photo and in the list of amenities: Maximum 2 adult guests per room, no children.

Somewhere on the page have it stated again: Per state/county occupancy regulations, there is a maximum of 2 guests per room. NO exceptions. Ours is an adults only B&B. (Adult= 21 years of age and older.) Of course you want to pretty that up and make it positive- To enhance guest enjoyment of their vacation...blah blah blah...

Your online booking page has to state that clearly as well. The confirmation has to state it again.

(And, yet, I just changed from allowing pets to not allowing pets and people are blithely ticking the 'read the policies' box which clearly state we don't take pets and then put in the notes- 'We are bringing a golden retriever.' So good luck with anyone reading whatever you put out there!)

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05/22/2008

WHEW...you dodged the bullet on this one. But keep in mind for the next time all that was shared. Yes, live and learn...it's hard but effective.

birdwatcher's picture
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I'm so sorry you had to go through that. We accept kids 10 and over-one time a Chinese family showed up with a 5 year old for a week stay, we were stupified as well but since we are not the owners of the Inn we had to call her to make the decision. Personally we have a separate area that has two rooms away from the other rooms and we were pretty empty for the week. We were amazed how well behaved this little person was-but we know how you feel.

Personally I would have said no im sorry, but dh would have let them In, but after the "grandma" incident-wow that would have totally changed my view of the whole situation. Hope that you fared well....

gillumhouse's picture
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We take them (kids I mean) but rarely get them. The worst behaved "kid" we ever had was a 21 year old who I really wanted to slap silly for the way she treated her Mom who was paying for everything and slap the Mom for allowing her daughter to treat her that way. Twice we had crying babies - but no one else in-house thank goodness and both were reservations with baby, not walk-ins. I would have warned any others booking that we had a baby booked - for just that reason. Just as I tell people booking for Fron tier Days week that we have a carnival on our doorstep - literally.

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Remember my story of the guy arriving late on a Friday (and then I heard it! The high pitched squeal of a little boy running around) I went up and sure enough there is this little boy, AND WHO HAD TO SIT AT THE TABLE with the adults the next day...so I am saying this to warn about "the next day" and the guests walked straight up to me and said "I thought there is a no kid policy?" (and they may have been a couple who had a hard time finding an overnight sitter for their 'kid')

The guy put me into a very awkward position, and it was not fair on me, not fair on the other guests, and the little boy should not have been staying here. There is more to the story, but that is enough to get the gist...for tomorrow.

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Madeleine's picture
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Right. And that's when you balance having 6 rooms mad or 1 room mad. I take the one mad room/lost revenue over 6 rooms never returning.

We do take kids but that doesn't stop guests who KNOW we take kids from complaining about the kids. I think we've had one really bad complaint about a kid. And it was 3 kids. I showed the parents the back stairs and they insisted on taking the kids thru the entire house stamping up the stairs as little kids do.

OK, it was 5 minutes of little kid stamping but I heard about it the next day like it was all night.

We've also had adults sneak in. And sneak out. You really think I don't know you didn't check in even tho you're lurking around in the morning trying to pretend you did? One room looked like a clown car they had so many bodies packed in there after a wedding. And they left the key in the room and bolted in the morning.

Madeleine's picture
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Ask to see their confirmation. When they produce it, show them where it says 'Adults only' and then, if you want to be nice, call around to a few places for them. If there is nothing, hand them a bill for the extra person and explain that if ANYONE complains about the kid because they are ALL here for an 'adults only' vacation they will be paying to refund every guest.

IF they agree to that, let them in, if they don't turn them away. It's not any different then showing up with 3 adults for a room that holds 2.

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This happened to friends of mine and they STUCK TO THEIR GUNS!  Said there was no way they could accommodate a child, sent them on their way...unhappy of course..TOUGH! They were told numerous times in confirmation and on the web site, on reservation check off etc. They charged them for the deposit but not for the 2 day stay. I say that they were lucky.  What did they do, of course they wrote a TA review..the only bad one out of over 600. So that tells something.

Sure you feel bad, but imagine how much worse you are going to feel if the kid cries all night, wets your bed and you have to give a discount to your other guests. STICK TO YOUR GUNS.

I would go up to the room now, and tell them, you violated our policy and out of the goodness of my heart I am letting you stay, but know you had better not have any problems or you will be back and ask them to leave even if it is the middle of the night.

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EmptyNest wrote:

...What did they do, of course they wrote a TA review..the only bad one out of over 600....

The badge of honour bad review. You reply to it and from then on, everyone reads it and knows your policy and that you stick to your guns about it. No more children and I bet the number of reservations goes up, because they know you have no kids.

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Honest mistake or done on purpose? My usual suggestion is this... ask them what they want to do, considering that you have only one bed, a reservation for two adults at an adults only bed and breakfast. Why should it be on you to solve the problem... when they created it. I know, it's a tough spot and you are likely to bend, but at least this way, they know CLEARLY what they did and maybe they will come up with a solution.

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And just where is this kid going to sleep? In your bed with the parents? Do you have waterproof mattress pad on the bed? You do not say whether a boy or girl, but little boys are known to have problems in this area beyond diaper stage. What chutzpah!! I would charge them an extra person fee. Are the code police going to be on your door tonight? I would inform them that should the child become noisy, they WILL be invited to leave - and NO REFUND. They have no leg to stand on since your policy states ADULTS. They  broke the contract, not you.

Edited to add: I probably would have done what you did at the time. They are counting on us being flummoxed and letting them in. I would still warn them about disturbing other guests being a reason to show them the door. There is no way they should be permitted to risk YOUR livelihood due to their ignorant behavior. Why should you have to refund other people - tell them they will be charged for any rooms complaining about being disturbed. It IS a nice thought isn't it even though I doubt you would do it. Easy for me to say as I sit here miles away without the problem.

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09/15/2012

Chutzpah is right.  As the Grandma was standing on the porch saying "what do you mean Adults only?  What kind of a place is this?!?"  She yelled into the parking lot, "Dave, bring in the crib!"  So much for discreet!  Fortunately, the other guests had already left for dinner.  And just for more of her high class act, as I walked them into the room, she went into the bathroom and proceeded to pee with the bathroom door open! blush I am just putting this all into the hands of the goddess of B&Bs to get us through the night peacefully.  laugh

gillumhouse's picture
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Whoa! That puts a whole new light on it. If Grandma was there, it would have been no, stay with Granny. I can only imagine how shocked you were both on the porch and in the room. It is difficult to tell people no when you are stupefied.  Granny sounds like a total winner!

Madeleine's picture
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OK, that is just plain rude. Is this for one night? I hope.

Generic's picture
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This is the time to think fast and answer "clothing optional". 

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I pictured the scene with the parents at the door and this kid standing behind looking off with his hands in his pockets, "Who me?" 

Well, you did what I would do, let them in. Not be happy about it and be worried all night about the KID VOICE carrying through the walls, and stomping around sounds.

As for code, in reality what I would think is that you cannot say no to children. Not sure where you are, but unless there is some sort of 21 and older rule for some reason, you really can't discriminate about a toddler sleeping in the bed with Mom and Dad anyway.  You can set me straight on it, I know most of us say adults only, but we would be obliged to accept a child if they pushed it. It is more of a rule of the owners, not the law.

Iris's picture
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Joey Bloggs wrote:

 .  You can set me straight on it, I know most of us say adults only, but we would be obliged to accept a child if they pushed it. It is more of a rule of the owners, not the law.

 

You can refuse to provide service to anyone you chose.  It's private property and when you read the small print on just about any hotel, motel, Inn, they all state somewhere exactly that.  

Madeleine's picture
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Joey Bloggs wrote:

you really can't discriminate about a toddler sleeping in the bed with Mom and Dad anyway. 

I think you can if there is an occupancy limit. If they are limited to 2 per room and no more and they're full, that's too many people for the occupancy code. And then it is easier to say, 'I'm sorry, I am not going to lose my license if someone complains about this.'

I mentioned something along those lines one time and the smart ass guest looked around and said, 'I don't SEE an inspector anywhere, do YOU?' That in and of itself is enough reason for me to decline to take someone. If they don't care about my livelihood, I don't care about where they sleep.

I actually DO discriminate against toddler sleeping in same bed. Guests can do what they want once the door is closed but they have to take a room with 2 beds. If I don't have that, I don't take them. And I've gotten grief over it from guests.

We had the one who showed up with a 7 week old recently. Hmmm, forgot you were pregnant when you made the rez?

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04/03/2011

Not happened here, but I think you should not have accepted them. Sorry they drove a long way; sorry there may be no other place to stay; sorry they didn't read your policies.  But, besides being against code and no way to bill them, it is not fair to your other guests nor to you!

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09/15/2012

As I think about this situation, I believe growing a spine is the solution!  You are correct about sending them away, but I was so taken aback, I didn't take a stand.

Thanks for the  support

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